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A 16-Year-Old Driver Hit My Car, Who Will Pay For These Damages?

Summer isn’t quite over yet, and it seems that more and more people are out and about on the road. Summertime is also when more young drivers will come out onto the roads to practice. Many drivers who are underage need to be practicing several hours before even getting into the driver’s education vehicle. These drivers are inexperienced, unfamiliar with the rules of the roads, and are often unable to judge just how close they are to a car before they have an accident.

New Jersey Is a No-Fault Car Insurance State

New Jersey is a no-fault car insurance state. That means that if your car is in an accident, you sustain personal injuries in a car accident, or if your vehicle is hit in an accident, that you will have to use your own driver’s insurance to pay for the damages. If your car is hit by an underaged driver, you will have a few options for recovery of the damages.

Report Your Car’s Damages to Your Insurance Company After the Loss

First, you will need to report the accident to your insurance company, and if you have any information on the driver who hit you, you’ll need to give them that information too. You will be paying for your car repairs yourself, but you may be able to recover damages from the other driver through your insurance. If the insurance company determines that the underaged driver is at fault, it may have recourse to go against this driver and the driver’s policy.

Insurance Companies Can Subrogate When Their Insured Is Not at Fault for the Loss

Where applicable, after your insurance company pays for your losses and medical bills for personal injuries to your car, it may go against the insurance company of the underage driver. In this case, your insurance company could decide to pay your losses and car repairs, and then go after the insurance company of the parents of the underaged driver, to recoup their losses if they can.

You Might Need to Bring a Lawsuit Against the Underage Driver for Damages

If the underaged driver who hit your car does not have any insurance at all, then your insurance company will pay for your losses. In that instance, you may have to go against the underaged driver or the driver’s legal guardian or parents in a lawsuit, to get back the money that was spent repairing your car and paying for your personal injuries. If this feels like a punitive action, it is. People are supposed to carry at least basic insurance, and if they are underaged they are supposed to also be learning how to drive with a licensed driver in the car directing them to drive safely as they learn. If the underaged driver who hit your car was driving alone, has no insurance, or didn’t even have permission to be in the car that he or she was driving, you should bring an action to recoup your losses for someone that irresponsible behind the wheel.

Underaged drivers can wreck-havoc on the roads. If your car has been hit by a underaged driver and you need to recover your damages and losses, just call Sarofiem & Antoun at (201) 792–3333. We are able to talk to you about your case, and can explain the next steps to receiving a full recovery compensation package for your case involving your car accident with an underaged driver.

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